Straight out of a Disney movie – Mili the Little Spaniard

Mili the little spaniard

In what can be said a miraculous escape and straight out of a Disney movie, a dog survived being trapped in a shipping container for 40 days. Mili the Little Spaniard, as she is now fondly called in Panama City, somehow got trapped in an empty shipping container destined to travel from Spain to Panama City crossing the Atlantic from Andalucia.

She is approximately a year old, caramel coloured fluffed up dog who is now, after months of rehabilitation and training, living the time of her life at the MIDA Agricultural Development Ministry. But when she arrived at Panama’s Atlantico Port, she was just a dehydrated, bruised and frail little animal fighting for her life. After all, she had been all alone in that container for more than a month without food to eat or water to drink.

She weighed just nine pounds (4kg) when she arrived, said Hugo Turillazzi, a vet and administrator in the canine unit at MIDA. He said that she might have been in a good condition when she got trapped in the container and it is possible that she survived off her body fat.

Mili has been named after Milagros (Miracle) after the stunt she pulled off. Dog trainer Edgardo Aguirre described Mili as friendly, gentle with people, with a good appetite and playful.

During the five months after her discovery, Mili spent time recovering and being trained at the ministry’s canine unit. Having learned to detect the aromas of fruit and vegetables, Mili began working a week ago ‘with good results’. Dogs in her unit work at the capital’s international airport, detecting fresh food in travellers’ luggage to prevent outside diseases entering the country. Whenever she detects a suspicious piece of luggage, she scratches it and then sits down beside it waiting for her reward.

“She’s a scanner that doesn’t cost very much, only the food and affection that we give her, and she’s very trustworthy,” said Turillazzi.

The December 2021 oceanic voyage that Mili accidentally boarded lasted 20 days, before the container sat at the port in hot and humid Panama City for another 20 days in January.

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